Firefighters lobby MPs over cuts

Fire crews from across South Yorkshire have lobbied local MPs over cuts they claim will result in the loss of 140 frontline posts.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue (SYFR) needs to save £10million by 2015 and has been consulting on changes to its services.

Among the changes is alterations to the way Aston and Maltby Fire Stations will be crewed.

SYFR want to introduce Close Proximity Crewing which will see full-time crews working four consecutive day shifts and during the nights in between they would be on call and stay at dedicated accommodation on site or near the station.

This week crew members travelled to the House of Commons to challenge local MPs over the funding cuts.

John Gilliver, Fire Brigade’s Union brigade secretary said: “These are slash and burn cuts with frontline crews being targeted once again. Politicians of all parties promised no cuts to the front line, but that is precisely what continues to happen.”

“We’re going to end up with even more cuts to firefighters, fewer appliances and fewer stations. Frontline crews will be spread even more thinly than we are now.”

“We were over-stretched by major flooding a few years ago, if anything like that happens again we’ll be over-whelmed. It is difficult enough coping since the last round of cuts and these are a step too far.”

“How can they expect us to cope with all the 999 incidents we have to deal with, after cuts of this magnitude?”

“It is simply unreal to expect us to be able to do so no matter how dedicated we are to serving our local communities.”

“These cuts would clearly increase risk to the public and firefighters. We’re asking our MPs of all political parties to start demanding to know how we’ll cope in the future.”

SYRF’s consultation into the plans ends on 6th February and they are urging people to give their views.

Visit for more information on the proposed changes and how to give your feedback.